UC Santa Cruz Koret Scholars announced

Monday, April 3, 2017

Fifty undergraduate students from across UC Santa Cruz were selected to receive a Koret Undergraduate Research Scholarship. Eight graduate students, and 42 faculty members will serve as mentors.

 

The Koret scholars working closely with graduate student and faculty mentors within their departments, will complete projects as varied as the characterization of free surface energy of thin film materials to creating a codebook scheme for interviews conducted as part of the No Place Like Home initiative. Three undergraduate students will work directly with the Student Success Evaluation and Research Center (SSERC) as Student Success Research scholars, mentored by graduate student, Brandon Balzer Carr a Ph.D. candidate in psychology. They will be evaluating the impact of student success initiatives on student retention rates at UC Santa Cruz.

 

With $1 million in funding provided by the Koret Foundation, the Koret Scholars program was launched in November 2016 to support new research collaborations campus wide. Faculty involvement is an essential aspect of the program.

 

“Beyond shaping the research experience, faculty play a critical role in affirming students’ potential, in providing access to important networks, resources, and information in academe, and in becoming long-term advocates for students,” notes faculty mentor, Rebecca Covarrubias, assistant professor in psychology. “We need programs, like Koret, to prepare and empower our next generation of diverse leaders, teachers, researchers, and agents of change.”

 

Applied research and academic achievement through extracurricular programming has proven successful in supporting student retention and graduation.

 

"It is well-established in the research literature that undergraduate student involvement in research plays a significant role in the academic achievement, retention, and performance of undergraduate students,” notes Samara Foster, managing director of the SSERC and coordinator for this program. “This is particularly true for students of color, first generation college students, low-income students, and lower achieving students.”

 

“Our partnership with the Koret Foundation has offered UC Santa Cruz the opportunity to substantially increase the research opportunities for undergraduate students, as well opportunities for undergraduate students to develop close mentor relationships with graduate students and faculty. We expect this partnership with Koret to have a great impact on student success on our campus," says Foster.

 

Koret Scholars, and their mentors, will have the opportunity to share their research at the Koret Scholars Research Slam on June 9 during Student Achievement Week.

 

Koret Graduate Student Mentors:

David Coulter, Astronomy and Astrophysics

Luz de Wit, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Juan José Díaz León, Electrical Engineering

Alina Fernandez, Latin American and Latino Studies

Keelan Guiley, Chemistry

Alicia Michael, Chemistry

Steven Perry, Chemistry and Biochemistry

Ibette Valle, Psychology

 

Koret Undergraduate Research Scholars:

Esteban Adame (STEVENSON), Sociology BA

  - Department Mentor: Steve McKay, Sociology
Anikeya Aditya (CROWN), Mathematics BA

  - Department Mentor: Stefano Profumo, Physics
Reem Aldayafleh (NINE), Electrical Engineering BS

  - Department Mentor: David Fryauf, Electrical Engineering

Carol Amaya (OAKES), Latin American and Latino Studies BA

  - Department Mentor: Leslie Lopez, Community Studies and Oakes College

Andres Arias (OAKES), Latin American and Latino Studies BA

  - Department Mentor: Miriam Greenberg, Sociology

Samantha Assaf (OAKES), Molecular, Cell and Developmental Biology BS

  - Department Mentor: Alan Zahler, Molecular, Cell and Developmental Biology

Leslie Bautista (CARSON), Biochemistry and Molecular Biology BS

  - Department Mentor: Steven Perry, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Joanna Beltran (MERRILL), Psychology BA

  - Department Mentor: Gina Langhout, Psychology and Oakes College
Dhyana Buckley (MERRILL), Linguistics BA

  - Department Mentor: Pranav Anand, Linguistics
Katharine Bunch (OAKES), Biochemistry and Molecular Biology BS

  - Department Mentor: Keelan Guiley, Chemistry
Steven Carmona Mora (PORTER), Sociology BA

  - Department Mentor: Katherine Darling, Sociology
Allison Cheney (KRESGE), Biochemistry and Molecular Biology BS

  - Department Mentor: Erin McCauley, PBSci-Chemistry and Biochemistry
Sarah Cligher (CARSON), Bioengineering BS

  - Department Mentor: Manel Camps, METX
Carolina Cuellar (STEVENSON), Bioengineering BS

  - Department Mentor: Rebecca Dubois, Bioengineering
Elliot Eckholm (KRESGE), Physics (Astrophysics) BS

  - Department Mentor: Joel Primack, Physics
Kevin Ekanem (OAKES), Molecular, Cell and Developmental Biology BS

  - Department Mentor: Grant Herzog, Molecular, Cell and Developmental Biology
Jessica Elgersma (CROWN), Ecology and Evolution BS

  - Department Mentor: Luz deWit, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
Erica Ferrer (COWELL), Marine Biology BS

  - Department Mentor: Kristy Kroeker, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
Pearl Figueroa-Ocampo (COWELL), Psychology BA

  - Department Mentor: Ibette Valle, Psychology
Hannah Finegold (MERRILL), Legal Studies BA

  - Department Mentor: Katherine Darling, Sociology
Sarah Flores (PORTER), Film and Digital Media BA

  - Department Mentor: Shelly Stamp, Film and Digital Media
Mileena Garcia (CROWN), Physics BS

  - Department Mentor: David Coulter, Astronomy and Astrophysics
Frances Hamkins-Indik (KRESGE), Chemistry BS

  - Department Mentor: Erin McCauley, Chemistry and Biochemistry
Nathan Heller (STEVENSON), Cognitive Science BS

  - Department Mentor: Nicolas Davindenko, Psychology
Cori Hoover (STEVENSON), History BA

  - Department Mentor: Elaine Sullivan, History
Reed Kenny (CARSON), Plant Sciences BS

  - Department Mentor: Michael Loik, Environmental Studies
Hana King (KRESGE), Sociology BA

  - Department Mentor: Ben Carson, Music and Kresge College
Savannah Koch (STEVENSON), Astrophysics BS

  - Department Mentor: Enrico Ramirez-Ruiz, Astronomy and Astrophysics

Sean Larkin (CROWN), Physics BS

  - Department Mentor: Joel Primack, Physics
Julisa Lopez (KRESGE), Psychology

  - Department Mentor: Ibette Valle, Psychology
Maximillian Marin (CROWN), Biochemistry and Molecular Biology BS

  - Department Mentor: Angela Brooks, Biomolecular Engineering
Katie Marlow (STEVENSON), Sociology BA

  - Department Mentor: Miriam Greenberg, Sociology
Karla Martinez Nevarez (NINE), Molecular, Cell and Developmental Biology BS

  - Department Mentor: Manny Ares, Molecular, Cell and Developmental Biology
David Mateo (OAKES), Politics

  - Department Mentor: Kent Eaton, Politics
Krystal Mendez (NINE), Literature BA

  - Department Mentor: René Fox, Literature
Forrest Nichols (NINE), Chemistry BS

  - Department Mentor: Shaowei Chen, Chemistry
Ivette Perez (CROWN), Biochemistry and Molecular Biology BS

  - Department Mentor: Bronwen Stanford, Environmental Studies
Mollie Peterson (NINE), Anthropology BA

  - Department Mentor: Lars Fehren-Schmitz, Anthropology
Andres Pinedo (TEN), Latin American and Latino Studies BA

  - Department Mentor: Rebecca Covarrubias, Psychology
Reem Rashid (CROWN), Bioengineering BS

  - Department Mentor: Ali Ahmet Yanik, Electrical Engineering
Gavin Smith (PORTER), Chemistry BS

  - Department Mentor: Phillip Crews, Chemistry and Biochemistry
Naomi Tesfuzigta (COWELL), Molecular, Cell and Developmental Biology BS

  - Department Mentor: Manuel Ares, Molecular, Cell and Developmental Biology
Jugmohit Toor (TEN), Neuroscience BS

  - Department Mentor: Nik Sgourakis, PBSci
Daniela Torres (STEVENSON), History BA

  - Department Mentor: Sociology
Alissa Trowbridge (NINE), Linguistics BA

  - Department Mentor: Sandra Chung, Linguistics
William Tsuei (KRESGE), Chemistry BS

  - Department Mentor: Erin McCauley, Chemistry
Carolina Vazquez (KRESGE), Spanish Studies BA

  - Department Mentor: Alina Fernandez, Latin American and Latino Studies
Alma Villa (NINE), Latin American Studies and Sociology Combination BA

  - Department Mentor: Steve McKay, Sociology
Kevin Weatherwax (TEN), Psychology BA

  - Department Mentor: Rebecca Covarrubias, Psychology
Meghan Yap-Chiongco (MERRILL), Ecology and Evolution BS

  - Department Mentor: Rita Mehta, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

 

Student Success Research Scholars:

Brandon Balzer Carr, Psychology (Graduate Student Mentor)

Rebecca London, Sociology & SSERC (Faculty Mentor)

Samara Foster, SSERC (Staff Mentor)


Elyse Fischground (MERRILL), Community Studies BA

Alisa Sas (STEVENSON), Psychology BA

Riri Shibata (STEVENSON), Environmental Studies BA